Brouwerij De Ranke - Guldenberg

Brouwerij De Ranke - Guldenberg

Beer Club featured in Rare Beer Club

Style:

Belgian-style: Triple meets Belgian Strong Pale Ale meets Belgian IPA

Country:

Belgium

Alcohol by Volume:

8.50%

Brouwerij De Ranke - Guldenberg

  • Alcohol by Volume: 8.50%
  • Bottle Size: No
  • Serving Temperature: 45-50° F
  • Suggested Glassware: Snifter or Goblet
It’s hard to classify this outstanding beer. Is it an example of the Belgian Strong Pale Ale? Generically speaking, yes. Though it doesn’t really fit neatly into that category, and the label actually states that it’s a Tripel, the heavy-handed addition of hops takes it to Belgian IPA territory. Set the styles aside for a moment and just enjoy! Expect this unfiltered beer to pour a hazy butterscotch, honey-gold color, topped with a massive, thick, meringue-like head. The aroma smacks of honeyish malts and some tropical fruit tones as well as a lemony zest and ample hops. Overall, the nose is bigly fruited and flowery, with flourishes of mandarin oranges and a twinge of pear skin. Complexity looms as even more notes emerge in the bouquet: honey, herbal, grassy hop tones, and a minor note of spicy phenolics and cloves. The beer goes down with yeasty and hoppy spiciness coming to the forefront. The hops not only add a spicy bite, they also have a rather drying, bitter character. Look for prominent orange flavors, with cloves, slight hints of cinnamon, and some woody notes. This is a yeast and fruit bomb! Expect the beer to finish with a lengthy arc of flowery bitterness. So complex. So rewarding. Somehow, the hoppiness does not lead to imbalance; it’s all tied together very well. Floral, fruity, yeasty, hoppy… this beer has a little something for everyone, and a whole lotta something for fans of innovative Belgian beer. World class. This beer is massively complex, and it changes as it warms, so a food pairing is a bit overkill, but pairing with whole boiled lobster served with drawn butter and lemon is a tasty combo. The rich meat and butter are cut by the sharpness and gentle acidity of this beer, and the lemon is a nice complement to the beer’s herbal hoppiness. Guldenberg will also hold up to a spicy Mongolian beef dish, and is especially nice with a fine, sharp blue or a pungent gorgonzola (you could even take it as far as limburger). If you’d like to learn about fine gourmet cheeses firsthand, consider picking up a membership to our Gourmet Cheese of the Month Club. Details may be found at www.monthlyclubs.com.
We could feature only Belgian beers and keep this club going for years, never needing to repeat a single beer. There are just so many world-class beers produced in this national brew haven. One such example comes to us from the Brouwerij de Ranke out of West Flanders. We’ve selected a really solid example of Belgian brewing, but the version from de Ranke is unlike most other examples for a number of reasons. First off, the production quantity is quite limited; you’d be hard pressed to find it elsewhere in the US. Secondly, it is more heavily hopped than most examples of the style, so it suits many of the craft microbrew fans in the US who have come to appreciate a heavy dose of our precious little friend, the hop. Thirdly, in the context of Belgian beer history, this beer was only recently created, yet is sweeping through Belgium with massive popularity, impressing the least impressionable of beer-loving palates, including those reluctant to appreciate native styles augmented by high hop levels. Brouwerij De Ranke was founded in 1994 by two good friends, Nino Bacelle and Guido Devos. Their story is a classic in Belgium, where the very best craft brewing usually begins as a passionately pursued hobby, not an occupation (a similar tale is told again and again in the US as well). For Nino and Guido, brewing was literally a weekend obsession. For a few hours on Friday and Saturday each week, the historic, turn-of-the-century Deca Brewery in West Flanders was turned over to the De Ranke brewers, who made small batches of what many consider the best specialty beers of Belgium. Their beers are robust and flavorful, and known for their atypically (in Belgium) massive hoppiness, which comes from the best Hallertau and Brewer’s Gold varieties. In 2005, after 11 years of brewing at the Deca Brewery, they built their own. Not bad for a weekend hobby—building a brewery represents no small feat (or fee!) Their story of dedication and quality is told in each delicious bottle of their beers. It is, indeed, a good read. For more information about the brewery, learn to speak Dutch and check out their website at www.deranke.be
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